Every child needs to know his parents love him every single day. How do you show your kids love? Many parents see it as a time to buy them more things. Think about it, do your children need more stuff? Is this the only way you can show your kids you love them? By showering them with gifts? If your kids are not ever satisfied with what they already have, giving them more may be teaching them greed is okay.
Perhaps you choose to show your children love by allowing them to do what they beg for. Unless your kids/teens are good at setting their own boundaries, we hope you use caution when opening the door to unlimited freedoms. Giving children freedom of choice is another way parents think they are showing love to them. Well, it seems harmless enough to let them choose what they want to wear, eat, drink, play, and so forth. Harmless that is, until they choose not to pick up their toys when you tell them to. They don’t understand in their parents’ minds, freedom of choice is a one-way ticket – they can choose what they want to do but not what they don’t want to do.
You might be thinking that the only kind of love we think is appropriate to show children is ‘tough love’. What some call ‘tough love’ we see in a different way. We encourage you to set a biblical standard for your children’s behavior at all ages and stick to it. So if you want to show love to your kids in a way they will truly benefit from, then be consistent when training them to submit to the standard you and God have set. If you are consistent in setting and reinforcing boundaries when they are young, you shouldn’t need to when they are teens (because they will know how to set them for themselves) and you will be able to enjoy your teens instead of trying to rein them in.
We all know children need unconditional love. What does this mean? It means you need to show your children you love them without conditions. Do your kids think you only love them when they do their chores, keep their room picked up, homework done and so forth? Find a way today to show each of your children you love them without conditions!
The Mom’s Notes presentation, “Understanding the Funnel” and “Structuring Your Child’s Day, Part 1 & Part 2” will assist you with setting appropriate boundaries for your children.